Route 3A project will make corridor safer and more user-friendly

Conceptual design – no decisions have yet been made

March 28, 2024 By Carol Britton Meyer

Planning for major changes to the busy Route 3A corridor along the Hingham harborfront and beyond continues, with a focus on improving the safety of pedestrians, motorists, and bicyclists while providing a more user-friendly and enjoyable experience for residents and visitors alike.

These include a reconfigured and landscaped modern roundabout to replace the current Rotary, offering improved safety and accessibility for all transportation modes; a possible amphitheater with steps made of recycled granite from seawall projects and seating by the water; a mural on the unsightly ‘wall’ by the water that faces North Street; a shared-use path along the waterfront with a vegetative buffer from the busy roadway; new sidewalks and street and pedestrian lighting; and updated traffic signals with flashing beacons indicating that someone is trying to cross the street, among other improvements.

Overall, the project includes safety and related improvements along Route 3A, from the intersection of Otis Street and Broad Cove Road near the Hingham Lobster Pound to the intersection of George Washington Boulevard and Rockland Street.

Conceptual design – no decisions have yet been made

75 percent design phase
The plan — now in the 75 percent design phase — will complement already completed and ongoing harborfront improvements, including completion of the Whitney Wharf bridge, the beachfront brick walkway and planned wharf improvements, the new bathhouse/snack shop/community room, and beach plantings.

Intersection improvements will provide a left-turn lane onto Water and North streets while providing improved pedestrian connections across 3A from downtown and along the waterfront.

“We will have a clearly defined entrance into downtown Hingham,” Town Engineer JR Frey told the Select Board recently in an update. “There will also be a proper right-turn lane onto Otis Street and a left-turn lane into the Bathing Beach parking lot.” He also noted that there is, and will continue to be,  “very close coordination” between the Rte. 3A and harbor resiliency projects.

Conceptual design – no decisions have yet been made

A long process
“It’s been a long process, starting in 2009 when the Select Board held meetings about the safety of the Rotary,” Route 3A Task Force Chair Judith Sneath said.

What was a revised cost estimate of $15 million in 2019 now has a $30 million pricetag, to be paid for with federal and state funds except for earlier Town Meeting appropriations totalling $800,000 for engineering and construction design costs.

“This investment by the town is yielding a good return,” Sneath said, noting that these improvements will act as a “‘magnet’ to attract people to the harbor.”

The task force’s charge is to coordinate the activities of the Route 3A-Summer Street corridor project with town staff, represent the town with state agencies and surrounding local communities, and to advise the Select Board as to the approved designs and implementation of the project.

The project is currently on the state’s 2026 Transportation Improvement Program schedule, with an expected groundbreaking of Spring of that year.

Other task force members include Deirdre Anderson, Bryce Blair, Paul Healey, and Alan Perrault.

Conceptual design – no decisions have yet been made

Working with stakeholders
The task force is working with the Bathing Beach Trustees, the historical commission, the Harbor Development Committee, and other stakeholders to ensure the best project possible.

“We need for everyone to be rowing the same boat in the same direction,” Sneath said. Within the next month or two the task force expects to invite the community to a “road show, where people can come and see the plans.”

Select Board Chair Liz Klein commended the task force and others  for “years and years of work on this project by many.”

Spring of 2026 “can’t come soon enough!” Select Board member William Ramsey said.

For further details or to submit comments, go to (currently being updated). Task force meetings are posted on the town website and are open to the public.

Conceptual design – no decisions have yet been made

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